Empa, a world-class industry-oriented research institution part of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Domain, has decided to create a new fellowship programme, the Empa international postdoctoral fellowship programme. EMPAPOSTDOCS is an individual-driven bottom-up incoming trans-national mobility and re-integration programme. It will allow experienced researchers from all over the world to create a research project and get the opportunity to work on their own research idea at one of the 29 research laboratories of Empa, in cooperation with a senior scientist already working at Empa of his choice. Empa’s five research programs and three locations offer a large degree of freedom of research topic and destination for the applicants. The applicants will be evaluated by an internal and external selection committee of peer-reviewers according to strict selection criteria focusing on the applicants’ professional, personal, social and leadership skills and his or her research potential. The fellows will be offered an Empa contract of two years. They will have the opportunity to improve their management skills by leading research projects. Being an EMPAPOSTDOCS fellow thus constitutes a good preparation for science and engineering management positions in the industry and for work in start-ups. The support schemes and career development tools, which include training in scientific and non-scientific skills, will insure that the stay of the fellows at Empa was beneficial for the development of their career. The highly competitive living allowance, research cost contribution and mobility package offered by EMPAPOSTDOCS will surely draw a fair amount of non-European applicants, while ensuring that the best European researchers stay within the ERA. The inclusion of a re-integration scheme also works in this direction, making EMPAPOSTDOCS’ goals directly in line with the overall objective and expected impact of the COFUND action.
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